The Art of Wee

A tinkle. A wee-wee. Taking a leak. A piddle. A widdle. A wet hello. A gypsy’s kiss. A wazz. Watering the buttercups. Bath-time at Uncle Geoffrey’s house, Spending a penny. A piss.

Whatever you want to call it, I’m sure we’ve all been caught short mid-run. If it’s a short run you might be able to hold it until you get safely home, but if it’s a longer run (or if, like me, you have the bladder of a tiny 97 year old man) then you may have to consider alternative arrangements.

A shop or cafe is sometimes an option, but they’re not always available when you need them. And besides, I tend to feel guilty about using their toilets without buying something, so I’ll either (best case scenario) order a coffee and then need to find a toilet again ten minutes later, or (worst case scenario) I’ll panic and buy the first thing I see, and then spend the remainder of my run lugging around a grand piano.

So, helpful chap that I am, I’ve compiled a selection of techniques that you can use the next time you feel that nagging pressure to answer nature’s call…

The Classic

This is fine if you can find a secluded tree or bush. Less so if you’re within twenty feet of a primary school.

The Prone

This one works particularly well in long grass, for added privacy. Quickly dig a little hole, then pull down your shorts and lay face-down, positioned neatly over the hole. Once you’re finished, simply cover it over and carry on with your run.

I imagine that this is how Bear Grylls does all of his weeing.

(I should really point out a health and safety issue with this one. Please dig your own hole rather than giving in to the temptation of using any ready-made ones you might see on your countryside run. If there’s a more unpleasant way to meet a hungry badger, I honestly can’t think of it).

Using Somebody’s Front Garden as a Toilet

Please don’t do this.

The Lawn Sprinkler

This is similar to “the Classic”, except you do it while spinning round and round on the spot. This one is good for scaring off wolves. Or attracting them. I forget which.

The Stealth

To any onlookers, it’ll just seem like an innocent stop at the side of the road to tie up a loose shoelace. In reality, you’re pulling your shorts to one side and enjoying a discreet al fresco widdle. The only problem with this technique is that, while crouching down, you concentrate a lot of yourself into the Danger Zone, meaning that you’ll inevitably wee all over your shorts, shoes, legs, hands, hair and probably into your own mouth.

The Showman

This is a good one to use of you’re caught short mid-race and don’t want to spoil your chances of a PB by stopping to use a portaloo. Simply lower your shorts without breaking stride, and then just let it happen. Distract any potential witnesses by waving your arms in the air and making noises like a scary owl.

The Urban

All of the above are just fine and dandy if you’re out in the countryside, but what about if you find yourself desperate for a wee while running through a busy city centre? Luckily, there’s a simple solution:

  1. Find drain grate..
  2. Stand directly over drain grate.
  3. Deploy giant traffic cone disguise concealed in hat.
  4. Wee.

PS: You may have noticed that most of the above techniques are based on the male anatomy. To be quite honest, the female plumbing system is a bit of a mystery to me, and I’m frightened by it. If I had to hazard a guess, I’d say that any technique will just end up resembling The Lawn Sprinkler. Please feel free to make your own suggestions in the comments section.

PPS: I was going to suggest some techniques for emergency pooping while out on a run, but I’ve just realised that all of the above techniques still make sense if you simply replace the word “wee” with “poo”.

The only things I’d add are that, if you’re using The Prone you should probably lay face-up, otherwise it’d just be a bit weird. Actually, face-down is still weird.

Also, if you’re trying to use The Showman, you’re going to have to wave your hands a bit more vigorously if you want to guarantee that everyone’s gaze is drawn upwards. Maybe consider waving some brightly coloured sparklers above your head.

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